Raspberry Pi + OpenELEC = media centre masterpiece?
By Adam TURNER
If you love to tinker with gadgets, running OpenELEC on the tiny Raspberry Pi could make an interesting lounge room project.
The Raspberry Pi could be your lounge room masterpiece.
If you're after a cheap computer which "just works" then the pint-sized Raspberry Pi is not for you. It's a barebones computer with an ARM processor designed to re-introduce people to the joys of tinkering with technology. It won't run Microsoft Windows or Mac OS. It won't even happily run high-end versions of Linux. It runs best on stripped down Linux distros such as Debian Squeeze.
I've been testing a review unit from local distributor element14 and I think it's fair to say that even Debian Squeeze pushes the Raspberry Pi to its limits. To me this little computer seems more suited to performing specific tasks rather than being a jack-of-all-trades desktop workstation. A media player jumps to mind and that's where OpenELEC comes in. "Open Embedded Linux Entertainment Center" includes a preconfigured version of the slick XBMC media centre interface plus support for third-party addons.
I downloaded OpenELEC RasPi build R11170 from root9.net and it seems to run smoothly on the Raspberry Pi. There's still plenty of work to be done but it certainly shows promise.
A thriving developer community seems to be growing around the Raspberry Pi and it should really take off once these tiny computers are no longer in short supply. If you've been looking to get your hands dirty rather than simply play with the latest wundergadgets, the Raspberry Pi and OpenELEC could be the challenge you've been looking for.
|Subscribe to Hydrapinion|